WISBECH: Seven years jail for the armchair rapist branded ""significant risk"" by judge

WEB EXCLUSIVE By JOHN ELWORTHY A WISBECH man was jailed for seven years for rape and his wife given a community order for aiding and abetting the assault. Stephen Slater, 46, was a dangerous man who poses to a significant risk to the public of repeating

WEB EXCLUSIVE

By JOHN ELWORTHY

A WISBECH man was jailed for seven years for rape and his wife given a community order for aiding and abetting the assault.

Stephen Slater, 46, was a "dangerous man who poses to a significant risk to the public of repeating similar offences" said Judge Howarth as he passed sentence.


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Both Slater, and his 23 year-old wife Sybil, appeared for sentencing at Cambridge Crown Court last Thursday after being convicted of the offences following a 12 day trial earlier this year.

The court had heard how Sybil Slater had befriended the 19-year-old victim and had suggested to her that if she ever wanted to visit the couple's home for a drink she was welcome to do so. On the afternoon of October 6, 2006, the victim did just that.

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When the girl arrived at the couple's home, Sybil Slater started chatting but what started as an innocent conversation quickly turned to something more sinister, the court had heard.

For it was then that Sybil Slater suggested to the victim that the two women-and Stephen Slater - enjoy a 'threesome'- a proposition immediately rejected by the victim who tried to leave.

The court heard, however, that both stopped her leaving, and whilst Sybil forcibly restrained her in an armchair, Stephen Slater raped her.

It was four days before the victim plucked up courage to report the rape to police, the court had been told, but officers moved swiftly to arrest the Slaters.

Although they denied the offence, even claiming initially that the victim had never been to their home, a team of forensic officers were able to prove otherwise.

"Forensically we could put victim in that flat, and forensics linked the pieces together," said DC Jon Edwards, who headed the investigation.

Slater, in addition to being jailed, was also placed on the sex offenders' register for life. Sybil Slater was given a community order, with a supervisory requirement for three years, and ordered to remain on the sex offenders' register for five years.

Judge Howarth said they were "dreadful offences in that the defendant effectively imprisoned his victim in the home for his sexual gratification."

The judge said he noted the significant affect on the victim and described Slater as a "manipulative and devious man who degraded and violated his victim. " Slater was a dangerous man who posed a significant risk to the public of repeating the offence, said the judge.

DC Edwards said: "This was a nasty incident for the victim who showed courage in reporting it to the police. She had to give evidence and that was harrowing in itself. I spoke to the victim and she was happy that he had been sentenced.

"I don't think she has ever recovered but she has shown tremendous strength and courage in trying to rebuild her life which was effectively shattered by her attackers."

He added that the role of the Crown Prosecution Service had been significant in bringing the case against the Slaters.

"They were extremely helpful throughout and the successful prosecution owes much to their hard work," he said.

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